SERVING COMMUNITIES WORLDWIDE
Ian Lloyd introduces us to the work of Clitheroe Lions who embark on projects that benefit communities locally and internationally
Clitheroe Lions Club was incorporated into the International Association of Lions Clubs in April 1983 with 24 charter members. The International Association was founded in 1918 by Melvyn Jones and a consortium of like-minded American businessmen. Over subsequent years it expanded to become an international organisation and is now one of the largest international service clubs in the world.
It celebrated its centenary last year. The motto of the organisation has always been, ‘We Serve’ and its mission statement is, ‘To empower volunteers to serve their communities, meet humanitarian needs, encourage peace and promote international understanding through Lions Clubs’.
Its charitable money raising arm is Lions Clubs International Foundation (LCIF) which was formed in 1968. For 50 years, therefore, it has been involved in raising money, from outside sources and donations from its clubs, to help tackle global disasters and large scale humanitarian problems.
Since its foundation it has raised US$1 billion from 13000 grants endeavouring to transfer funds swiftly to areas requiring immediate emergency support.
The Clitheroe Lions Club has, since its formation, endeavoured to support both local needs, requiring not only money, but also manpower, as well as setting aside funds to be used internationally via LCIF. Locally the money is distributed wherever there is a need both to individuals and other charitable groups.
How does the club raise this money? After 35 years one could say in ways too numerous to mention! Raffles, duck races, sportsman’s dinners, auctions, entertainment and, of course, in the 80s and early 90s, in collaboration with Clitheroe Round Table, the highly successful Clitheroe Heritage Fayre, latterly Clitheroe Castle Fayre, which became a tourist attraction and generated as much as £30,000 in its heyday.
These days Clitheroe Lions holds an annual duck race, an annual golf day thanks to Clitheroe Golf Club, and are involved with the Annual Clitheroe Food Festival.